Dena Sharp is a problem solver who gets results for her clients in even the most complex litigation. She serves as co-lead counsel in the In re Juul Labs Inc. multidistrict litigation, In re Xyrem Antitrust Litigation, and In re California Gasoline Spot Market Antitrust Litigation. She also serves as a member of the End-Payer Steering Committee in In re Generic Pharmaceuticals Pricing Antitrust Litigation, a massive case alleging that the world’s largest makers of generic drugs conspired to raise prices and prevent price competition for years. Dena is also privileged to represent clients of a fertility center whose eggs and embryos were compromised by a freezer tank malfunction. In June 2021, Dena and her team tried the first In re Pacific Fertility Center Litigation case in federal court in San Francisco, and won a groundbreaking $15 million jury verdict for the loss of four families’ eggs and embryos.
As co-lead counsel in In re Lidoderm Antitrust Litigation, a “pay-for delay” antitrust case that settled for $104.75 million on the eve of trial, Dena worked with her team to win class certification, defeat summary judgment, and obtain the largest recovery for a class of end-payers in similar federal litigation in more than a decade. She has also played a key role in a variety of other high-profile cases, including work on behalf of the direct purchasers in the In re Capacitors Antitrust Litigation, and representing investors in litigation arising from Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy and in matters involving Ponzi schemes and accounting fraud.
Outside the courtroom, Dena is the current chair of the Impact Fund, a public interest nonprofit, and has served as co-chair and faculty member of the annual Judicial Training Symposium for Federal Judges, hosted by the Federal Judicial Center and the Electronic Discovery Institute. She was elected to the American Law Institute in 2018, and sits on the board of advisors for the Center for Litigation and the Courts at UC Hastings. Dena co-authored a chapter in the ABA’s “Class Action Strategy and Practice Guide,” and the widely-cited Sedona Principles: Best Practices and Principles for Electronic Document Production (Third Edition).
Dena was recognized by Best Lawyers in America as the 2023 “Lawyer of the Year” in San Francisco for Plaintiffs’ Mass Tort / Class Action Litigation. The National Law Journal has twice recognized Dena as an “Elite Woman of the Plaintiffs’ Bar,” honoring her as one of only a handful of lawyers nationwide who has “consistently excelled in high-stakes matters on behalf of plaintiffs” over the course of her career. She was named one of the “Top 50 Women Attorneys in Northern California” by San Francisco magazine in 2021, and one of the “Top Antitrust Lawyers in California” and “Top Women Lawyers” in 2021 by the Daily Journal. Dena has also been recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer or Rising Star every year since 2009, and has been named one of the “Top 50 Women Lawyers in Northern California” by Super Lawyers since 2020. In 2022, Dena was named one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers in Northern California.
Dena is a graduate, cum laude, of the University of California College of the Law, San Francisco, where she was a member of the Thurston Society and received the Best Oral Advocate and Witkin awards. She graduated magna cum laude from Brown University. During law school, Dena externed for the Honorable Phyllis J. Hamilton of the Northern District of California, and the Honorable John E. Munter of the San Francisco Superior Court. A first-generation American, Dena is fluent in Spanish and German.
- Externed for the Honorable Phyllis J. Hamilton of the Northern District of California
- Externed for the Honorable John E. Munter of the San Francisco Superior Court
J.D., cum laude, University of California College of the Law, San Francisco
- Thurston Honors Society
- Best Oral Advocate Award
- Witkin Award in Legal Writing and Criminal Law courses
B.A., magna cum laude, Brown University
- Northern District of California
- Central District of California
- Southern District of California
- Eastern District of California
- District of Colorado
- Northern District of Illinois
- Courts of Appeals for the Ninth and Tenth Circuits
In re Restasis Antitrust Litigation
Co-lead counsel in this monopolization case against pharmaceutical giant Allergan for its multifaceted strategy to delay generic competition in the market for the blockbuster drug Restasis.
In re Lidoderm Antitrust Litigation
Co-lead counsel in this “pay-for-delay” litigation against three drug companies. Settled a week before jury selection only after the class was certified and summary judgment had been denied. The $104.75 million settlement represents the largest end-payer recovery in absolute and percentage terms in any federal pay-for-delay case in at least the past decade.
In re Generic Pharmaceuticals Pricing Antitrust Litigation
Member of the End-Payer Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee in this massive price-fixing case against dozens of drug companies, where executives have pleaded guilty to collusion and 48 state attorneys general have alleged a sprawling conspiracy on the part of the drug makers.
In re Pacific Fertility Litigation
Representing plaintiffs who allege their frozen eggs and embryos were affected by the failure of a cryopreservation tank at Pacific Fertility Center’s San Francisco clinic in early March 2018.
In re Capacitors Antitrust Litigation
Representing direct purchasers in a multidistrict proceeding that follows several executives pleading guilty to fixing the prices of capacitors, tiny electronic components found in devices from toasters to cell phones. Nearly $100 million in settlements to date and the case is proceeding to trial.
In re Lehman Brothers Holdings Securities and ERISA Litigation
Lead counsel for investors in the securities litigation arising from the largest bankruptcy in United States history. Recovered $120 million on behalf of structured note investors and helped secure total recoveries of over $700 million.
In re Oppenheimer California Fund Securities Litigation
Co-lead counsel for investors in Oppenheimer’s California Municipal Bond Fund, which misled investors about its investment risk and then lost nearly half its value. Recovered $50.75 million for the certified class of investors.
In re Provident Royalties, LLC / Medical Capital
Lead counsel team for the plaintiffs in this Ponzi scheme litigation, ultimately recovering $150 million for investors.
In re SLM Corporation Securities Litigation
Lead counsel team in accounting fraud litigation brought under Rule 10b-5 that resulted in a $35 million recovery.
- Allergan Biocell Textured Breast Implant Products Liability Litigation, District of New Jersey
- Juul Labs, Inc., Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, Northern District of California
Honors and Awards
Honors and Awards
- Recognized by Best Lawyers as the 2023 "Lawyer of the Year” in San Francisco for Mass Tort Litigation / Class Action – Plaintiffs
- Named to the Top 100 Super Lawyers in Northern California list (2022)
- Named to the Northern California Super Lawyers list (2017-present)
- Named to the Northern California Rising Stars list (2009-2016)
- Named to Best Lawyers in America (2021-2022)
- Named a Top Antitrust Lawyer in California by the Daily Journal (2021)
- Named one of the Top 50 Women Attorneys in Northern California by Best Lawyers (2021)
- Named to the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 (2019)
- Winner of the National Law Journal's Elite Women of the Plaintiff's Bar (2019, 2020)
- Named to Top 50: Women Northern California Super Lawyers (2020-present)
Community & Professional
- Member, American Law Institute
- Lawyer Representative, Ninth Circuit Judicial Council
- Impact Fund
- Member, Board of Directors
- Member, Grant Advisory Committee
- Chair, Development Committee
- Vice chair, Duke Law Bolch Judicial Institute, Advisory Council for the Duke Conferences
- Member, The Sedona Conference, Working Group 1 on Electronic Document Retention and Production
- American Bar Association
- Member, Sections on Antitrust, Securities Litigation, and Pretrial Practice and Discovery
- Former vice chair, Young Lawyer’s Division Litigation Committee
- Member, Federal Bar Association, Northern District of California Chapter
- Member, State Bar of California, Litigation Section
- Judge Largely Rejects Defendants’ Attempts to Force Confidential Arbitration in In re Pacific Fertility Center03.26.2019
- Name partner Dena Sharp co-authors chapter on investigating and filing class actions in American Bar Association’s new publication: “The Class Action Strategy and Practice Guide”01.24.2019
- Dena Sharp Selected as Co-Chair and Panelist at 2018 Judicial Training Symposium Hosted by the Federal Judicial Center and Electronic Discovery Institute10.01.2018
- Impact Fund Class Action Conference02.18.2020
- American Antitrust Institute10.21.2019
- Impact Fund Anniversary Gala05.14.2019
- Impact Fund Class Action Conference02.19.2019
- Federal Judicial Center and EDI Fourth Annual Judicial Training Symposium11.01.2018
- “Upon a Showing of Deficiency: Discovery on Discovery and Responses,” course instructorEDI and Duke Law Advanced E-Discovery Program10.01.2018
- “How Far Can Self-Reliance Get You?” PanelistDuke Law Diversity Conference06.01.2018
- “Managing the Haystack: How to Get the Most out of Electronic Discovery,” moderatorImpact Fund Class Action Conference02.2018
- “Bench-Bar Experiences with the 2015 Discovery Proportionality Amendments,” participantDuke Law Special Focus Meeting12.2017
- “Class Action Settlement Notice and the Extinction of ‘preliminary Approval,’” panelistImpact Fund Webinar Series08.2017
- “Class Actions Gone Wrong,” panelistImpact Fund Class Action Conference02.2017
- “Interpreting Rule 37(e): What Have We Learned from Six Months of Decisions?” panelistBloomberg BNA Webinar06.2016
- “The Sedona Principles, Third Edition,” panelistThe Sedona Conference WG1 Annual Meeting04.2016
- “Amending the Federal Rules: Intended and Unintended Consequences,” panelistBloomberg BNA Webinar12.2015
- “Update on the Sedona Principles, Third Edition,” panelistThe Sedona Conference WG1Annual Meeting04.2015
- “Applying the Proportionality Factors,” panelistDuke Law 2015 Proportionality Amendments Conference11.2014
- Civil litigation seminar, guest lecturerUniversity of California Berkeley School of Law and University of California Hastings School of Law09.2014
- “Lawyering on the Plaintiffs’ Side,” panelistUniversity of California, Hastings College of the Law10.2013
- “6th Annual Staying Ahead of the eDiscovery Curve Program,” facultyThe Sedona Conference Institute03.2012
- ABA PublicationWinter 2019
- Author, Duke Law Proportionality Guidelines and Best Practices (editorial board)Duke Law Judicial Institute (editorial board)Ongoing
- Co-author, The Sedona Principles: Best Practices and Principles for Electronic Document Production (Third Edition)The Sedona Conference01.2018
- Co-author, “Taxation of e-Discovery Costs Under 28 U.S.C. 1920(4): A Cost Shifting Trap for the Unwary”American Association for Justice Class Action Litigation Newsletter07.2015
- Co-author, Writing Effective Discovery MotionsAAJ Women’s Trial Caucus08.2013
- CAOC's Forum Magazine05.2012